Top 10 Awesome Retro Style Video Games
VOICE OVER: Dan Paradis
Script written by Alex Crilly McKean
Check out this retro video games list, showing the best retro style games and games that are like arcade games. Video games such as Retro City Rampage from VBlank Entertainment, Mega Man 9 from Capcom, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game from Ubisoft, Cave Story from Studio Pixel, The Legend of Grimrock from Almost Human, Axiom Verge from Thomas Happ Games, Hotline Miami from Dennaton Games, Shovel Knight from Yacht Club Games and Undertale from Toby Fox.
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Script written by Alex Crilly McKean
Top 10 Modern Retro Styled Video Games
Old school gaming is back and better than ever! Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we are counting down our picks for the top ten modern retro styled games.
For this list, we’ll be looking at games released in recent years that have taken retrothemes such as a more rustic art style or classic characters and managed to create a thrilling gaming experience that modern audiences can rally behind. Keep in mind we won’t be including indie games that don’t have any retro elements to them, so Braid and Fez won’t be making the cut.
#10: “Retro City Rampage” (2012)
Imagine everything you love about the 80s and 90s crammed into one video game in the style of an early Grand Theft Auto like game. That’s pretty much this title in a nutshell, and it takes every opportunity to pay tribute to not only iconic games such as Metal Gear and the NES Ninja Turtles, (even recreating that DAMN level) but every cheesy one-liner you can think of. Incorporating a top-down birds-eye viewpoint along with some 2D platformer elements, players will find themselves assuming the role of…The Player, as he causes chaos around an 8-bit city with a companion that looks suspiciously like Doc Brown. Old school gamers eat yours hearts out.
#9: “Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game” (2010)
Did you enjoy Michael Cena’s awkward quest to win the girl of his dreams and defeat her evil exes? Were you a fan of the original graphic novels? Or do you just want to play a good brawler to relive the days of Final Fight or Streets of Rage? This game has got you covered. Taking the animated style of its original incarnation, up to four players can battle together as they punch their way through seven levels packed with enemies and Ramona’s scorned lovers waiting for them at the end. Whether you want to power through it solo or grab some buddies and take on a Boss Rush, Scott and the gang will not disappoint.
#8: “Mega Man 9” (2008)
Much to the jubilation of long-time fans, the ninth entry in the extensive franchise took the blue bomber back to his roots. Omitting some of the more recent features such as sliding and charge shots, it was a definite return to form with the classic setup of eight Robot Masters in need of a serious beatdown. It not only provided nostalgic gameplay, some of the best boss battles of the series such as Galaxy Man, but also added new features such as time attack and optional missions for those who needed their Mega Man fix. No wonder it was received so well.
#7: “The Legend of Grimrock” (2014)
You won’t find a better tribute to the fantasy RPG dungeon crawlers of old than this! Inspired by the likes of Dungeon Master and Eye of the Beholder, players control a party of one to four characters as they attempt to escape the titular Grimrock. Combat and puzzle solving go hand in hand as each triumph yields experience points and harder challenges. The 3D grid-based, real time element captures theretro feel of classic 80s fantasy, but if that’s not authentic enough, the game does include the option to go “old school” where the map system is deactivated, leaving navigation completely up to the memory of the player.
#6: “Cave Story” (2004)
Inspired by the games he played in his youth, developer Daisuke Amaya gave us a 2D platformer that fans of the genre could easily rally behind. Set on a floating island, players took on the role of an amnesiac protagonist as they battled their way through the seemingly endless caves and the hordes of enemies that inhabited them. Mechanics very reminiscent of the Metroid series make for a simplistic but fun shooter, with an engrossing narrative providing the icing on the cake. We’d say its five years in development was well worth the wait!
#5: “Axiom Verge” (2015)
If Samus Aran’s early adventures were your jam, then this might just be the side-scroller for you. Trapped on an alien world, surrounded by hostile extra-terrestrials, players were treated to the best of what games such as Metroid and Blaster Master had to offer. A mass amount of weapons and power-ups blended with vast 8-bit exploration as well as the occasional monstrous alien boss captures the non-stop rush that gave allowed those iconic titles their immortal appeal. The variety of ways in which you can dispatch the ever increasing amount of enemies is just something that never seems to get old!
#4: “Super Meat Boy” (2010)
Do you have what it takes to conquer all three hundred levels? Inspired by the likes of platformers such as Super Mario Bros & Ghost n’ Goblins, players take control of the titular Meat Boy as he runs and jumps over various lethal obstacles in order to save his beloved Bandage Girl. Crumbling walls, saw blades and an abundance of boss battles steadily increase the difficulty to the point where you’ll no doubt end up screaming at the cute red cube for slipping, getting decapitated and ruining your chance for scoring that A+ grade. With its lengthy set of stages, addictive gameplay and retro look, it’s no wonder Super Meat Boy was so widely praised.
#3: “Hotline Miami” (2012)
Top down games have never been so manic. Tasked with carrying out a series of massacres against the local Russian Mafia, players have to employ either stealth or crushing violence in order to kill all their targets and make it out alive. Of course due to the unpredictability of the enemy A.I things can very easily turn into a bloodbath of hysterical promotions. With its variety of mission locations, visuals that just scream the 1980s and use animal masks to act as both handicaps and power ups, assassinations have never been so much fun!
#2: “Undertale” (2015)
Who would have guessed that this 8-bit indie title would end up redefining our perceptions of what video games could do? Glazed with a retro look and heavily inspired by Earthbound and various bullet hell shoot ‘em ups, Toby Fox’s gaming magnum opus not only made us fall in love with a pair of pixelated skeletons but pushed the envelope of what it meant to make real choices with in-game consequences. Combining a deeply investing story with bullet-hell combat and puzzle solving mechanics, if there ever was a game not to judge by its cover, it would be Undertale. We dare you to try and find another game where you’ll end up shipping a badass fish lady and an adorable she-lizard.
Before we reveal a number one pick, here are a few honourable mentions.
“Freedom Planet” (2014)
“Mutant Mudds” (2012)
“Angry Video Game Nerd Adventures” (2013)
“Mercenary Kings” (2014)
“Space Invaders Infinity Gene” (2009)
“Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved” (2005)
#1: “Shovel Knight” (2014)
Grab your treasure, arm yourself with your trusty shovel and prepare to battle the Order of No Quarter! Taking the classic elements from the likes of Ducktales, Megaman, Zelda 2 and Mario 3, players must take up the mantle of eponymous knight and dig their way to victory. Despite the quirky premise, the heartfelt nature of the game will have you switching between laughing at having bashed a boss’s brains in with a shovel, to shedding a tear over the chivalrous romance between Shovel and Shield Knight. With additional features such as New Game Plus and free DLC featuring the dubious but investing Plague Knight to keep players occupied, this is one modern retro game not to be missed.
Do you agree with our list? What’s your favourite modern retro style gamed? With new top tens published everyday, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.